November Featured Photographer: Skip Pearlman
Publish Date: 2019-10-30
What is your name and where can people find your work?
Describe your perfect staycation in Dutchess, or your idea of a fun weekend in the County
The perfect weekend would have to be catching three consecutive days (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) of amazing sunrises at any number of locations, then spending days in Beacon, around Hopewell and near the river at any number of spots - shooting peak colors in the fall. Then being in the right spots - you have your choice - somewhere near the river for three consecutive sunsets. After dark each of those three nights, I’m shooting star trails, long exposures, or moonrise/moonset shots that have been carefully planned and plotted.
What equipment do you use in your photography?
I use Nikon bodies - usually D750. Any photographer shooting landscapes will have a quality wide zoom as a go-to. I use the Nikon 17-55mm f2.8. I also shoot a lot of sports - and the Nikon 80-200mm (also f2.8) is the lens for that job, if you need low-light capabilities. In daylight for sports, and for moon shots, I use a Sigma 150-600mm, which - when used properly, is a terrific lens. For processing I always use a Mac - go-to is the 27-inch iMac desktop - fantastic for editing photos. Also constantly using a 15’' MacBook Pro.
What is your favorite place to photograph in Dutchess and why?
Picking a favorite spot in Dutchess is tough, because there are so many. But if I had to pick one, it would probably be Long Dock Park in Beacon. The opportunities are endless, with the rocks, the unique dock posts, the view of the highlands on one side and the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge on the other. Behind you have a great view of Mt. Beacon, which is a stone’s throw away, and another great shooting spot. And across the river you have a fabulous view (especially at night) of the Newburgh waterfront. There are hidden trails, and a bike path to explore. Denning's Point (also a fantastic spot) is also a short hike or bike ride down the bike path. There are great opportunities for long exposures, night/twilight reflections, moon shots (the moon regularly sets behind the Newburgh skyline - see my moon galleries). It’s an amazing place. Also on the ‘favorite’ list: Bannerman Castle, Poughkeepsie waterfront and Walkway over the Hudson, the Dover Stone Church is a great place to shoot, Mt. Beacon, and even New Hamburg on the river.
Do you have somewhere on your list that you want to photograph in Dutchess, but haven’t gotten there yet?
I have never been to Cat Rocks, but I understand it is a great spot!
Give us a few photography tips
I’ll give you one - and it’s a huge one that will improve your photography in ways you won’t believe. Those of you who already shoot RAW understand. If you aren’t already, ALWAYS shoot RAW images. IF you're not already doing this, there is no better tip for you. Two reasons - RAW allows for three stops of exposure IN EACH DIRECTION. That alone - and all it allows you to do - is mind-blowing. But you can also change white balance. OK, here’s another big one: get a polarizer. It will improve your daylight, sunset and twilight photos dramatically. Spend at least 75 dollars, and you could go a lot higher. But don’t go lower. Have a tripod, and a cable release as well. The last tip I’ll throw out is - take your camera out of automatic, and experiment. Learn how to use your camera functions, read the manual. There’s amazing stuff in there! (if the manual is too much for you, Google any questions you have and be specific about your camera - you’ll find an answer)!